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Documentary Review: ‘The Test’ – Journey of Hope, Immigration, Family, and the American Dream.



The Test,” directed by Claudia Myers and Laura Waters Hinson, is a poignant short documentary that delves into the journey of Eric Frimpong, a Ghanaian immigrant working as a maintenance worker at a retirement centre in the United States. 

The film revolves around Eric’s heartfelt desire to reunite with his wife and three children, whom he hasn’t seen in eight years, highlighting the significant obstacle of passing the U.S. Citizenship test to secure his family’s future in the country.

As a Ghanaian with aspirations of relocating with my family to the United States for better opportunities someday, I found “The Test” to be exceptionally relatable. Eric‘s struggles and motivations resonated deeply with me, illustrating the immense weight on his shoulders to not only succeed for himself but also for his loved ones left behind.

The documentary opens with the raw emotion of Eric expressing, “I haven’t seen my wife and children in 8 years,” setting the tone for the genuine sincerity of his journey. 

Throughout the film, Jill and Carl, an elderly couple, take on the role of Eric‘s tutor as he prepares for the daunting 100-question citizenship test. 

Despite the difficulty of the task, the couple’s patience and support shine through, underscoring the importance of community in overcoming challenges.

Interspersed with images of Eric‘s family back home, the film poignantly captures the stakes involved for Eric as he prepares for the life-changing test. The genuine love and concern from both Eric‘s family and his tutors add depth to the narrative, showcasing the universal theme of familial bonds transcending distance and circumstance.

Eric‘s sentiment regarding Jill and Carl as part of his family reflects the mutual connection formed through their shared journey. 

The film’s conclusion reveals the impact of the Goodwin House tutors, who have helped over 130 staff members become U.S. citizens, highlighting their commendable dedication to assisting immigrants in their pursuit of citizenship.

Ultimately, “The Test” serves as a heartwarming reminder of the importance of family and the power of hope. 

It explores themes of immigration, family separation, and the pursuit of the American Dream, offering a poignant glimpse into the challenges faced by immigrants navigating the complex process of obtaining citizenship.

In the end, it leaves viewers with a sense of optimism and faith in the inherent goodness of humanity.  I  will rate this short documentary film 4 out of 5 stars

Second on my list of addictions is Movies.. the only thing I could possibly love more is my Dearest Waakye lol. Nothing else does a better job of reminding me that ANYTHING is possible with the right amount of effort. I have great eye for details and flaws in scripts. Shallow scripts bore me. I am an avid reader. Your everyday Mr Nice guy. Always the last to speak in a room full of smart people. Half Human, half Martian but full MOVIE FREAK.

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